FedEx delivered a statement last week announcing their support for a driver who was caught on camera wrestling with protesters who were attempting to burn the American flag.
Matt Uhrin, a FedEx driver, was seen in an online video scuffling with a group of protesters who were attempting to burn the American flag at the Iowa City pedestrian mall. He wrestled one flag away from a protester and when a second one was starting to get burned, he took a fire extinguisher and extinguished the flame on it.
“Back off, back off,” Uhrin yells at some of the protesters attempting to take the flag out of his hands.
When the video became viral, many people praised Uhrin for his actions. The video prompted FedEx to issue a statement on the matter saying that “he remains a FedEx employee” after reviewing the incident.
An online petition circulated around the incident demanding FedEx not to fire Uhrin.
“Let’s make sure Matt Uhrin keeps his job at FedEx,” the petition reads, which has received more than 12,000 signatures. “He was standing up for our American flag and should be commended, not punished!”
Two of the protesters were arrested on Thursday for violating Iowa City’s public open burn ordinance since they did not get a permit from the fire department to do so. It is legal to burn the American flag in the United States.
Paul Osgerby of Iowa City and Kelli Ebensberger were arrested and could face up to 30 days in jail or a fine of up to $625, the Iowa City Press Citizen reported. Both are scheduled to appear at the Johnson County Courthouse on Feb. 23.
“When I see the flag, I see racial injustice,” Osgerby said. “I see social injustice from Native American genocide to African-American slavery to failing to recognize women as citizens until the 20th century.”